Left ventricular assist device (LVAD) implantation is associated with the risk of early postoperative right heart dysfunction, which may require urgent institution of mechanical right ventricular support. This is conventionally achieved by cannulation of the femoral vein or right atrial appendage for the inflow and the pulmonary artery for the outflow. However, this requires resternotomy with increased risk of wound and device infection, as well as excessive bleeding. We describe the use of peripheral venoarterial extracorporeal membrane oxygenation as a short-term treatment of right heart failure after HeartWare LVAD implantation.
From *Department of Molecular Medicine and Surgery, Karolinska Institutet, †Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery and Anesthesiology, Karolinska University Hospital, ‡Department of Medicine, Karolinska Institutet, and §Department of Cardiology, Karolinska University Hospital, Stockholm, Sweden.
Submitted for consideration March 2013; accepted for publication in revised form May 2013.
Disclosures: Dr. Lund has received speaker’s and consulting fees from Thoratec Corp. and HeartWare Inc. and research grants from Thoratec Corp. The authors have no other disclosures to report.
Reprint Requests: Magnus Dalén, MD, Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery and Anesthesiology, Karolinska University Hospital, SE-171 76 Stockholm, Sweden. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org